Instagram Loses the Like in Australia; Industry Reacts Positively

Instagram's decision to trial the removal of like counters in its social platform not expected to dent influencer marketing

Instagram is trialling the removal of ‘likes’ tallies from photos and videos in Australian consumer feeds, a move it says is about turning the tables on the way people engage with the social platform. 

The Facebook-owned group confirmed it’s started a test in Australia removing the total number of likes on photos and video views in feed, permalink pages and profiles. The test is being pitched as a way of encouraging users and followers to focus on the content of what they share, not on likes. It comes off the back of a similar trial conducted in Canada from May.

It’s also a move coming off a tide of industry debate on the pressure securing likes has placed on consumers, and at a more macro level, its detrimental impact on culture and society. 

Individual users will still be able to access their own like counts through private settings, but will not be able to see how many likes other posts have received. In a statement, Facebook said the test has no bearing on measurement tools available to businesses and creators, such as Insights or Ad Manager, which will remain in place. 

Read the full article on CMO, with comments from Ogilvy's Jason Davey and Switched On's Yash Murthy.

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